May Babcock, a papermaker and multi-disciplinary visual artist based in Providence, Rhode Island, has been selected as the White Mountain National Forest Artist in Residence for 2019.
Babcock’s work has taken her to national parks, wilderness, and urban settings for arts and educational residencies using non-native plants to make paper and artworks that explore place. “We’re delighted to be able to bring May here to see how the ecology, hydrology, and geology of the White Mountain Forest are captured in papers made from Forest materials,” says Tom Wagner, Forest Supervisor for the WMNF.
Babcock’s three-week residency will take place in late Summer, and will include opportunities for the public to engage in plant education and hands-on papermaking. Marianne Leberman of the WMNF remarks, “Identifying and learning about non-native species in the Forest and turning those plants into paper by hand alongside an expert artist is really a new, interesting way for the public to engage with the Forest and we’re excited that May’s residency will link the ecology and artistry of the Forest.” Babcock’s residency also ties in to the history of papermaking in the region. “May’s knowledge about the history of papermaking, from its roots as a 2,000 year old handcraft to industrial papermaking and the emergence of papermaking as an artistic discipline in the 1970s will provide rich opportunities for discussion and local connections,” adds Arts Alliance Executive Director, Kate Griffin.
Keep an eye out for official event announcements! Tentative dates for public events are:
Saturday 8/17, 9-11am, location TBA - Plant Walk & Harvesting
Saturday 8/31, location TBA - Pop-up Papermill
White Mountain National Forest, New Hampshire